FREDERICTON (GNB) – New Brunswick is the first province to sign an agreement that increases federal funding for home and community care, as well as services for mental health and addictions.

“The signing of this bilateral agreement means we can further improve the quality of life for New Brunswickers through increased access to home and community care and mental health and addictions services in our province,” said Health Minister Benoît Bourque.

The agreement covers the first five years of a 10-year federal health funding commitment of about $230 million.

“As a New Brunswicker, I am very pleased to have reached this first agreement in my home province,” said federal Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor. “It will describe how targeted funds for mental health and addiction services and home and community care will be invested and reported on for the coming years. This will make a real difference for the health and well-being of New Brunswickers and their families.”

The agreement will support the following community-based health services:

  • The Medavie Health Services New Brunswick co-ordination initiative involving the Extra-Mural Program, Ambulance New Brunswick and Tele-Care 811.
  • A new electronic clinical information system to support the Extra-Mural Program.
  • Various measures to improve palliative care, such as enhanced education, assessment and monitoring tools, and the development of residential care services.

The agreement will support the following mental health and addictions services:

  • Enhancing the action plan on mental health and addictions to ensure improved co-ordination and delivery of services.
  • Improving the network of excellence for children and youth with complex mental health needs through investments, including the provincewide expansion of the Integrated Service Delivery model in schools and communities.

The agreement establishes performance targets to be achieved by 2021.

This funding will support the provincial government’s priorities as set out in the New Brunswick Family Plan‎, which aims to improve the health of all New Brunswickers. It also aligns with objectives set out in the Common Statement of Principles on Shared Health Priorities, which was endorsed by federal, provincial and territorial governments in August. The statement focuses on improving Canadians’ access to mental health and addiction services, as well as to home and community care.